One to One Coaching

I offer free 30 minute telephone/Skype consultations for people wanting to find out more about coaching on the 'baby decision'. Email me at and assistant Laura will respond and arrange an appointment with you. Visit for more information about my coaching services.

Friday, 20 March 2015

Men who want children more than their girlfriends or wives

Men, until recently, have not shown a huge amount of interest in exploring this baby decision and therefore, I have targeting my services at women who are exploring or are ambivalent about the baby decision.

In terms of dealing with the tricky issue of wanting a baby when your partner doesn't, if I do have a client is coming to me for help because they want a baby but their partner doesn't, they are women.

However, in the past few years, I seen a slight increase in the numbers of men approaching me for coaching help when they want a child but their partner doesn't

This seems to be a growing trend - as discussed in this article Men Want Babies and Women Want Freedom. 

The author makes a very salient point at the end of the piece,

'As long as the particulars of childcare and career and flexibility are a gamble for women more than men, more and more of us are going to opt out of this dance. The upside is that maybe then we will have the collective leverage to fix the system.'

Tuesday, 10 March 2015

Having children over 45

Many more women are having children after 40.

I found this interesting article written by a woman who had her first child over 50.

The article quotes IreneeDaly who studied women who had children later in life.

Social norms have changed, says Irenee Daly at the Centre for Family Research in Cambridge. "We don't expect women of typical university age to want to have children. We socialise them away from that. The 20s are now regarded as a time for exploration, before life's enduring responsibilities take hold." Young men and women still expect to have settled down in a stable relationship and own their own home before starting a family. "And since these things are all happening later, that pushes having children later."

For her doctoral thesis, Daly looked at whether women in their late 20s and early 30s understood the degree to which fertility declined with age and whether they thought that IVF could compensate for the effects of ageing. "There was a perception that it would work out in time. Most of the women I spoke to were shocked to learn that IVF is linked to age, that even in the youngest age group, we're talking about only a 30% success rate. Then they were doubly shocked to see that by 44 it goes down to 5% using one's own eggs."

Freezing eggs doesn't guarantee a viable pregnancy and, as Daly points out, "You have to freeze young eggs, so a woman of 40 saying that she's decided to freeze her eggs – well, what sort of quality are those eggs?"

Thursday, 5 March 2015

Are you ready to have children?

One of the issues that comes up for people coming to me who are unsure whether they want to have children or not is around whether there is a ‘right time’ to have children or not.

The pressure of the biological clock often means that people can feel pressured into having children before they feel ready.  Once you are in your mid-30’s, it can feel like you don’t have time enough to be in the ‘right’ place for having children. 

My approach is to take clients through their fears around not being ready enough and we question them together


  • Finance - How much finance do they think they need? Is that realistic? Could they manage on less?
  • Career - How could they manage the focus on their career and child-raising? What compromises could they and their partner make? What role models can they find in their industry who manage work and kids well? What strategies could they put into place?
  • Personal Freedom – What else would they like to do before they have children? How could they still ensure they have some freedom and the ability to have adventure even after they have children?

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Monday, 2 March 2015

Is there a right time to have a baby?

I was quoted in this short article in March 2015 Cosmo UK on the right time to have a baby!

In this article, the journalist looked the benefits of having children before age 35.

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

When friends have children

When your friends start having children, it can feel like you've been abandoned.  I thought this was an interesting article from a mother who talks about the importance of staying close to friends who don't have children.  This came out of her own experience.

'Pre-baby, I didn't think much about there being a great baby divide between women. As my friends slowly started to have children, I realized that I didn't see them as much as before, but I didn't worry too much about our friendships changing until I was the only childless one present at a friend's child's birthday party one year. While everyone talked baby this and baby that around me, I felt completely left out of the conversation. I cared about their kids, but I had nothing to contribute.'

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Do you think that people who choose not to have children are selfish?

I was invited to speak to recent comments by the Pope that people who do not have children are selfish on LBC Radio Today.  I had an interesting discussion with the presenter Shelagh Fogarty

(You can read more about the Pope's comments in this article Pope Francis: The Choice to Not Have Children is Selfish )

We need to recognise the diverse ways that people can contribute to our communities and to the lives of others  in all sorts of ways.   People who do not have children often have more time and energy to give to other people in the community.  Many people without children are also involved in the lives of friends children or nieces or nephews.  Or they are supporting and looking after elderly relatives.
It's disappointing that the Pope didn't acknowledge the great contribution that many people without children make - indeed the Catholic church is made up of people who have decided not to have children in order to live a life of service.

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Regrets about not having children.

I often talk to clients who wonder if they will feel regret about not having children when they are older.

For my book, I interviewed older childfree women and several mentioned that occasionally they do feel a twinge of regret but that on the whole they felt find with their choice not to have children.

I was reminded of this when I read this lovely letter that a child free woman wrote to a child she could have had in a parallel universe.

I think that it's natural to wonder about a path that we didn't take and feel a twinge of sadness about what might have been.

Monday, 9 February 2015

Last week, there was an interesting discussion on BBC Radio 4's Women's Hour programme on women who want to have sterilization in their 20's and early 30's.  Many women who do want sterilization in their 20's or 30's are refused it - and one of the arguments used is that the woman might change her mind and want children after she had made this irreversible decision.

 Three women were interviewed - one woman who was sure in her 20's she didn't want children, one woman who did wait to see if she would change her mind but didn't, and one woman who thought she didn't want children but did change her mind.   You can listen to the podcast by going to this link and going to the podcast for Feb 5th.

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Worried I will lose freedom if I have children?

In my coaching practice, I call upon polarities work a lot when I am working with people can't decide whether they want to be parents or not.

One of the common polarities that comes up again and again is FREEDOM VS COMMITTMENT/STRUCTURE

Clients who are struggling with this polarity often report:

- Loving their freedom & independence!
- Valuing spontaneity and the ability to do 'what I want, when I want'
- Feeling constricted or suffocated by the idea of mundane routines associated by having children
- Hating the idea of predictability

Yet usually in the pole that we are rejecting or that we find difficult to be with are positive aspects that could help & support us in life as well.

The key is to see if you can find ways to combine the positive aspects of freedom with the positive aspects of committment. Would the committment or structure of having a child be different is you knew you were still able to have freedom and independence?

Monday, 2 February 2015

Who is going to care for me in old age?

An article appears in the Times today on this issue I've been exploring here on the blog - really important that it is being discussed and explored by policy makers.  You can read the article here at the Gateway Women (an organisation for women who are childless not by choice)

Thursday, 29 January 2015

Is concern about finance a large factor in making the decision to have children or not?

In my last post, I looked at the issue of the cost of having children.   Many studies have shown that having and raising a child to the age of 18 is indeed costly - with most estimates putting the cost over £200,000 per year.

I find it interesting that financial fears are rarely at the top of my clients list of fears or anxieties.  Often finance is taken into consideration into when to have a child. Clients might speculate about timing whether to stay in a job because it has good maternity leave and pay. 

If a woman is considering having a child on her own or not, the issue of whether her income is enough to support a family is often mentioned however.